[ kuh-los-uhl ]
/ kəˈlɒs əl /
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extraordinarily great in size, extent, or degree; gigantic; huge.
of or resembling a colossus.
(initial capital letter)Architecture. noting or pertaining to a classical order whose columns or pilasters span two or more stories of a building.
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Origin of colossal

First recorded in 1705–15; coloss(us) + -al1

synonym study for colossal

1. See gigantic.


col·os·sal·i·ty [kol-uh-sal-i-tee], /ˌkɒl əˈsæl ɪ ti/, nounco·los·sal·ly, adverbsu·per·co·los·sal, adjectivesu·per·co·los·sal·ly, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023


What does colossal mean?

Colossal describes something as being very large in size, degree, or amount, as in I went to a colossal shopping mall that stretched for a mile. If something is colossal, it is enormous, gigantic, or massive.

Colossal can also be used to describe a large degree of something, that is, a large amount or a large extent, like a colossal amount of boxes or a colossal advantage in the playoffs.

Less commonly, colossal describes something as resembling a colossus, which is a very large statue, as in The large man was so colossal that he blocked the entire doorway.

Example: Tyrannosaurus rex was a colossal dinosaur that towered over many of the smaller animals.

Where does colossal come from?

The first records of colossal come from around 1705. It is created from the noun colossus, which comes from the Greek kolossós, meaning “statue.”

Both colossal and colossus make a reference to the Colossus of Rhodes, an enormous statue of a Greek god that was one of the Seven Wonders of the World. The statue was said to be over 100 feet tall, and it was once a common myth that it straddled the harbor of Rhodes. The statue fell after an earthquake that occurred in the third century BCE.

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What are some other forms related to colossal?

  • clossality (noun)
  • colossally (adjective)
  • supercolossal (adjective)
  • supercolossally (adverb)

What are some synonyms for colossal?

What are some words that share a root or word element with colossal

What are some words that often get used in discussing colossal?

How is colossal used in real life?

Colossal is a common word used to describe things that are very large.



Try using colossal!

Which of the following things would NOT be described as colossal?

A. The Pacific Ocean
B. a mouse
C. Jupiter
D. a 100-story skyscraper

How to use colossal in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for colossal

/ (kəˈlɒsəl) /

of immense size; huge; gigantic
(in figure sculpture) approximately twice life-sizeCompare heroic (def. 7)
Also: giant architect of or relating to the order of columns and pilasters that extend more than one storey in a façade

Derived forms of colossal

colossally, adverb
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012